Jump to content

      












CANCELLED
Johnson Street Gateway
Uses: condo, commercial
Address: 1314-1324 Wharf Street
Municipality: Victoria
Region: Downtown Victoria
Storeys: 8
Condo units: 103 (studio/bachelor, 1BR, 2BR, 3BR, penthouse, live-work)
Sales status: in planning
The eight-storey Johnson Street Gateway/Northern Junk condominium and ground floor commercial development is c... (view full profile)
Learn more about Johnson Street Gateway on Citified.ca
Photo

[Downtown Victoria] Johnson Street Gateway (Northern Junk) | condos; commercial | 7-storeys | Cancelled in 2019

Condo Commercial

  • Please log in to reply
1740 replies to this topic

#621 sebberry

sebberry

    Resident Housekeeper

  • Moderator
  • 20,101 posts
  • LocationVictoria

Posted 02 February 2012 - 04:19 PM

2. The Hallmark Heritage Society has stated previously and continues to state their support for the work the Developer is doing to rehabilitate the heritage designated buildings at 1314 and 1316/1318 Wharf Street. These designated buildings are not at risk for demolition.


Unfortunately it can't be had both ways.

In order for the developer to refurbish the old buildings, his project has to be profitable. From what I'm understanding, it is HHS's wish that the old buildings be visible from Wharf and Johnson streets. This would require not one big building that wraps around the old ones, but several smaller buildings apart from one another to allow for these views. That adds significant cost to the development.

If anyone wants the old buildings refurbished, they're going to have to make some compromises. This city can't stay old forever.

Victoria current weather by neighbourhood: Victoria school-based weather station network

Victoria webcams: Big Wave Dave Webcams

 


#622 Mike K.

Mike K.
  • Administrator
  • 65,224 posts

Posted 02 February 2012 - 04:22 PM

As far as I know, we have no members of the Skyscraper Society on board but it is not to late.

This must be a reference back to when VibrantVictoria was first launched and contributors were nicknamed "skyscraper fanboys" for supporting modern development in the city. This was at a time when even the mainstream media dared to write favourably about development for fear of losing traction among the movers and shakers and City Hall and its various committees.

Regretfully this nickname still persists in circles where new urbanism and the championing of modern architecture is erroneously (perhaps purposefully, unfortunately) equated with a desire to destroy the City's stock of heritage and replace it with canyons of skyscrapers. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Know it all.
Citified.ca is Victoria's most comprehensive research resource for new-build homes and commercial spaces.


#623 Nparker

Nparker
  • Member
  • 29,566 posts

Posted 02 February 2012 - 04:32 PM

...The Hallmark Heritage Society is of the opinion that the current proposal does not meet the Old Town Design Guidelines. It certainly does not meet the Official Community Plan or the Harbour Plan...


As a 30-year plus resident of the city of Victoria I am of the opinion that the NJ proposal DOES meet Old Town design guidelines as well as being part of any reasonal community and harbour plans. My opinion is every bit as valid and important as that of the HHS and I look forward to the city soliciting my input on this proposal.

#624 Greg

Greg
  • Member
  • 3,362 posts

Posted 02 February 2012 - 04:36 PM

1. No one within the Hallmark Heritage Society is attempting to preserve the grassy median.


Yes. This is precisely what you are doing. That and ensuring that the NJ buildings continue to crumble into disrepair, like they have for the last decade or so...

#625 jklymak

jklymak
  • Member
  • 3,514 posts

Posted 02 February 2012 - 05:14 PM

5. The Hallmark Heritage Society is of the opinion that the current proposal does not meet the Old Town Design Guidelines. It certainly does not meet the Official Community Plan or the Harbour Plan.


It would be informative to know specifically what those opinions are based on. In what way does it violate the Old Town Design guidelines? What part of the OCP and HP are "certainly" violated?

#626 Bob Fugger

Bob Fugger

    Chief Factor

  • Member
  • 3,190 posts
  • LocationSouth Central CSV

Posted 02 February 2012 - 05:21 PM

Your thoughtful comments are appreciated.

The membership of the City of Victoria Heritage Advisory Committee draws upon various community stakeholders to advise on matters relating to the conservation of heritage resources. Among these is the Hallmark Society, local architects, community planners, historians and others with an interest in the preservation of historical buildings. I am sure the City would welcome additional applicants to sit upon this and other committees.

Within the area of the City known as 'Old Town", the Committee can also speak of the suitability of the design of new buildings as these must conform to the Design Guidelines; Old Town, Victoria, B.C. These can be viewed at "http://www.victoria.ca/common/pdfs/plnpln_hrtgd_final2.pdf#search="Design Guidelines Old town" .

It is easy to say that the proposed development meets the Guidelines in a general way (City of Victoria Planning Department) but the real question is: do they meet the intent? The Hallmark Heritage Society is of the opinion the design of the current proposal does not meet this minimal standard.

The Hallmark Heritage Society is in agreement with the Developer's proposal to rehabilitate the Gold Rush Warehouses and to provide access to to the foreshore, although there are some concerns regarding the parking lot entry on the south side of the building at 1314 Wharf Street.

On a general note, the Hallmark Heritage Society does not receive any funding from the City of Victoria. We are wholly dependent upon our membership and small, very small and occasional, grants from Gaming. The Society did not take any position regarding the replacement of the Johnson Street bridge as the preservation of municipal infrastructure is a difficult subject: Should we also preserve old roads, sidewalks, sewers? All infrastructure needs to be replaced as the City grows.
The Hallmark Heritage Society is not against high rise buildings or skyscrapers but we do feel that the have no place within Old Town or other areas with historical significance to how the City of Victoria came to exist.


1. No one within the Hallmark Heritage Society is attempting to preserve the grassy median.
2. The Hallmark Heritage Society has stated previously and continues to state their support for the work the Developer is doing to rehabilitate the heritage designated buildings at 1314 and 1316/1318 Wharf Street. These designated buildings are not at risk for demolition.
3. No member of any committee or any City Councilor comes to the table as a blank sheet. We all have opinions. At the committee stage, the developer will present his proposal (his opinion) and, after discussion, the Committee will present its opinion in the form of a recommendation to Council.
4. The Committee does not have a design function. that problem rests with the Developer's Architects and the constraints the Developer places upon them.
5. The Hallmark Heritage Society is of the opinion that the current proposal does not meet the Old Town Design Guidelines. It certainly does not meet the Official Community Plan or the Harbour Plan.
6. I am a representative of the Hallmark Heritage Society on the Heritage Advisory Committee. Other members of the committee are Hallmark members as well. Members of the City of Victoria planning department staff may well be members. As far as I know, we have no members of the Skyscraper Society on board but it is not to late.


As you have taken a public position and made public statements outside of your role as Chair of the Heritage Advisory Committee, I would urge you to recuse yourself from these proceedings. Based on the principles of natural justice, the applicant has an inalienable right to an unbiased hearing, which is not possible given your interests as the head of the Hallmark Society.

If you do not recuse yourself, you risk invalidating the entire hearing process.

#627 aastra

aastra
  • Member
  • 17,258 posts

Posted 02 February 2012 - 06:14 PM

In what way does it violate the Old Town Design guidelines?


How's this for a report card for the Northern Junk proposal?

:D - Yes
:) - To some degree/in some manner
:mad: - No
:confused: - Not applicable or otherwise confusing

Old Town - General Characteristics:


The general characteristics of Old Town include:

• historic buildings ranging in height from one to five storeys :D
• classically-inspired proportion and building elements :D
• load-bearing brick and stone buildings and details and forms that accompany load-bearing masonry :)
• architecturally distinctive buildings at street heads :D
• rounded or splayed building corners, often with corner entrances, at street intersections :)
• buildings at street intersections with asymmetrical facades terminating in a taller corner element :mad:
• pedestrian paths, mews, and courtyards within / through blocks :D
• shop windows at street level displaying merchandise :D
• rich detailing, craftsmanship and colour of street / alley elevations :D
• views of harbour, mountains and hills on street ends :D
• cohesiveness of buildings and spaces that are neighbourly yet dense :D

Old Commercial District - Special Characteristics:


The special characteristics of the old commercial district include:

• the views of the Inner Harbour from Wharf Street, Bastion Square, and Fort Street :)
• the street plan, including alleyways and courtyards, and city blocks of various shapes and sizes including small blocks :D
• the architectural differences seen in the buildings and streets; the identification of the oldest streets closest to the water, and newer streets and buildings farther inland :confused:
• Government Street, the central orienting spine of the old commercial district, defined by a streetscape of businesses including historic banks, offices, and shops :confused:
• the density and intact street front character of historic streetscapes created by the distinct collection of nineteenth and twentieth century (1880-1910) commercial and administrative buildings built up to the property line :D
• the varying heights averaging four storeys that contribute to the rich skyline texture of the street frontages :D
• prevailing American neo-classical commercial architectural styles overlain with Victorian applied ornament on functional brick structures :)
• the prominent use of brick masonry construction, such as the use of arched entryways into brick buildings :)
• articulated, three dimensional nature of facades and skylines :D

Waterfront - Special Characteristics:

The special characteristics of the waterfront area of Old Town include:

• the intersection of bridge, harbour, and street :D
• building types and spaces associated with the functions of a commercial harbour :D
• buildings over the water, vessels, floatplanes, buoys and marks, wharves, pontoons, piles, boat ramps, davits and ladders, hawsers , bollards, and mooring rings :confused:
• random rubble stonework, brick masonry, and iron shutters and doors :)
• stone and brick retaining walls :)
• buildings with an industrial aesthetic :D
• dual-aspect structures that present a commercial frontage to Wharf Street and a harbour frontage to the water :D
• the rich texture of the land / water edge resulting from conditions including inter-tidal beaches, projecting structures, inundations, and reclamations :D
• Load-bearing masonry buildings, and details and forms that accompany load-bearing masonry surrounded by subordinate lighter wood and metal structures :)
• the constantly changing water’s edge resulting from the movement of vessels, the trans-shipping of cargo, and the state of the tide :D
• the glimpses of water seen between buildings, down alleyways and slips, and on street axes :D

Mermaid Wharf is valued for its response to the defining characteristics of the Old Town waterfront:

One of the few new waterfront developments within the Old Town Conservation Area, 407 Swift Street is valued for its response to the defining characteristics of the Old Town waterfront. The characteristics that underlie the building’s value include:

• the dual aspect structure that presents a façade inspired by warehouse design toward the water and a façade inspired by commercial architecture toward Swift Street :)
• the use of vast expanses of brick and small metal balconies reminiscent of warehouse fire escapes :D
• absence of ornament/use of an industrial aesthetic :D
• waterfront landscaping including wharves, docks, piles, and indigenous plant material :)


RESULTS:

32 applicable criteria out of 35 (three criteria not applicable or otherwise confusing)
21 full marks
10 half-marks
1 strike

26 out of 32 = 81.25%

#628 aastra

aastra
  • Member
  • 17,258 posts

Posted 02 February 2012 - 06:16 PM

If anybody disagrees with my ratings above, please state your reasons and we can collectively decide whether or not to make adjustments.

Edit: I changed some of my own ratings.

Old Town - General Characteristics:

• architecturally distinctive buildings at street heads :D

(I'm not exactly sure what "street head" means, but if this site qualifies as a street head then it should be green)

Waterfront - Special Characteristics:

• random rubble stonework, brick masonry, and iron shutters and doors :)
• stone and brick retaining walls :)

Mermaid Wharf - Special Characteristics:

• the dual aspect structure that presents a façade inspired by warehouse design toward the water and a façade inspired by commercial architecture toward Swift Street :)

#629 MarkoJ

MarkoJ
  • Member
  • 5,269 posts
  • LocationVictoria

Posted 02 February 2012 - 06:56 PM

1. No one within the Hallmark Heritage Society is attempting to preserve the grassy median.


The Hallmark Heritage Society is also not striving to work with an excellent proposal from the developer either. We have an opportunity here to receive a major improvement to this underutilized space at the developer's cost - when will this opportunity come along again?

Economics have to play into this as well. The developer can't redo the proposal/renderings 10 times and hold carrying costs for 5 years until the Hallmark Heritage Society is finally happy with something.

The cost with getting architectural drawings and consults for proposal like this are enormous, only to have non-specific criticism?

The old buildings are getting preserved (and they aren't exactly 19th century Vienna), the new building looks good with plenty of brick, and the waterfront interaction is spectacular in my opinion looking at the renderings. I don't see a problem.

Marko Juras, REALTOR® & Associate Broker | Gold MLS® 2011-2020 | Fair Realty

www.MarkoJuras.com Full Service MLS® - 2.75% | www.834sales.com & www.promontoryforsale.com - Building(s) specialist 

Looking at Condo Pre-Sales in Victoria? Save Thousands!

 

 


#630 Ken Johnson

Ken Johnson
  • Member
  • 97 posts

Posted 02 February 2012 - 08:10 PM

In response to Bob Fugger:

My opinion has been formed by a review of the 100 plus pages of information presented at the Policy and Governance Committee meeting of December 15th as well as the additional information of January 26th. If one must be recused for forming an opinion to soon, we would have to include Mayor Fortin as he has stated he is in favour of this project.

The HAC performs an advisory function only. Council decides.

#631 pseudotsuga

pseudotsuga
  • Member
  • 287 posts

Posted 02 February 2012 - 08:56 PM

I don't really see any conflict. I'd think a public advisory committee would be filled with special interests representatives by definition. But I'm not in the business.

It would be informative to know specifically what those opinions are based on. In what way does it violate the Old Town Design guidelines? What part of the OCP and HP are "certainly" violated?


I'd like to echo this. Specific examples are needed rather than simply saying the project doesn't meet the intent of the guidelines. aastra's list is a very good starting point.

I'm no architect and don't care much about the project either way - convince me. But to do that you'll need to provide evidence.

#632 Sparky

Sparky

    GET OFF MY LAWN

  • Moderator
  • 11,682 posts

Posted 02 February 2012 - 09:28 PM

The HAC performs an advisory function only.


Thank you Ken for your responses.

If your statement above is to be taken at face value, why did you feel it was necessary for you as HAC chair, to lobby your dissent to the general public in the local media?

#633 dasmo

dasmo
  • Member
  • 6,146 posts

Posted 02 February 2012 - 09:42 PM

One should also weigh the aesthetic and historic value of these buildings. To me these buildings are not gems that need polishing back to their original glory (like say the MEC building). They also have a long history of being an undesirable area to sell drugs and one to cross the street to avoid, probably for longer than the original shops outfitted settlers on their way to strike it rich in gold. I think that the buildings are being saved and incorporated as they are is to be applauded and is more than adequate. I understand wanting to save the buildings but don't share the desire the showcase them.

#634 Sparky

Sparky

    GET OFF MY LAWN

  • Moderator
  • 11,682 posts

Posted 02 February 2012 - 09:50 PM

Welcome to Vibrant Victoria dasmo. I missed your first post yesterday.

#635 Bob Fugger

Bob Fugger

    Chief Factor

  • Member
  • 3,190 posts
  • LocationSouth Central CSV

Posted 02 February 2012 - 09:51 PM

Thank you Ken for your responses.

If your statement above is to be taken at face value, why did you feel it was necessary for you as HAC chair, to lobby your dissent to the general public in the local media?


This is exactly what I'm talking about. You cannot preside over a hearing about a development if you have made public statements against the development or the developer before the hearing. Non-interested third parties - like VV forum members - can reasonably apprehend bias and conclude that the applicant will not get a fair shake. It's not that he's president of the Hallmark Society, but that he's made public statements before allowing the applicant to present his case in a hearing. That he is not a formal decision-maker is irrelevant. By virtue of the development being referred to them by Council is weight enough.

You can expect a concerned citizen to raise this with Rob Woodland and the City's legal department. There's no room in our democracy for these ****ing kangaroo courts.

#636 dasmo

dasmo
  • Member
  • 6,146 posts

Posted 02 February 2012 - 10:00 PM

Thanks and hi!

#637 jklymak

jklymak
  • Member
  • 3,514 posts

Posted 02 February 2012 - 10:04 PM

^^ I think you guys are taking this a bit far; chairs of boards express their opinions all the time. Unless he has some pecuniary interest, I don't think he needs to recuse himself.

#638 Sparky

Sparky

    GET OFF MY LAWN

  • Moderator
  • 11,682 posts

Posted 02 February 2012 - 10:23 PM

^ Can you help us understand with an example?

#639 Rob Randall

Rob Randall

    BIG TEXAS FORUMER

  • Member
  • 16,309 posts

Posted 02 February 2012 - 10:42 PM

Ken Johnson wants this new development to "copy" nearby heritage form (his word). This is a fatal architectural error. The present development interprets heritage forms without mimicking them. Copying actually does a disservice to heritage--it mocks it and diminishes its value. How? By confusing the viewer. If a new building can pass for an old building then it becomes impossible to determine what is heritage and what is contemporary. Actual heritage is diminished in our eye because you now can't tell real from fake.


^^ I think you guys are taking this a bit far; chairs of boards express their opinions all the time. Unless he has some pecuniary interest, I don't think he needs to recuse himself.


That's pretty much it. Heck, I'm on the City's Community Development Public Advisory Committee and I can say whatever I damn well please. The bar is set low for these boards. Staff and Council have a much higher bar. Maybe the Board of Variance, too.

“I mean I just don’t understand the big Texas part, like maybe he’s from Texas? I want to know the back story.”


#640 Bob Fugger

Bob Fugger

    Chief Factor

  • Member
  • 3,190 posts
  • LocationSouth Central CSV

Posted 03 February 2012 - 07:19 AM

Heck, I'm on the City's Community Development Public Advisory Committee and I can say whatever I damn well please. The bar is set low for these boards. Staff and Council have a much higher bar. Maybe the Board of Variance, too.


If I make public statements against you one day and then you see me sitting on a committee that can make recommendations that can de facto ruin or make more expensive something in your interest - that to you is acceptable?

That is a low bar indeed, Rob. It's disappointing that you find this is fair and acceptable in our democracy.

You're not quite at the end of this discussion topic!

Use the page links at the lower-left to go to the next page to read additional posts.
 



1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users